Trek issues voluntary nationwide recall of select Bontrager lights

In a coordinated effort with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Trek is issuing a voluntary recall of select Bontrager Flare RT lights sold individually as well as Bontrager Ion 700 RT front lights sold as part of the Bontrager Transmtr Set with Remote.


This recall was prompted by the discovery that the lights can turn off without warning when paired with a remote transmitter. To date, no injuries involving the affected lights have been reported. Upon discovery, the company immediately contacted the CPSC to begin the process of the recall action it is announcing today. The recall affects 700 lights located in the US, Canada, UK, and Japan.

Owners of Flare RT lights should check their light for the date code located on the back of the light. If the date code is between Af0400001 and Af0400407, it is affected by this recall. The date code of the affected Ion 700 RT is 1606 and is located on the bottom of the light under the charging port cover.

Trek is taking proactive measures to bring attention to this issue by reaching out through its global network of authorized retailers. As part of this voluntary recall, Trek will provide a free replacement light through its authorized retailers. To incentivize owners of the affected lights to return them, Trek will be issuing a $20 coupon good towards any Trek or Bontrager product for every light returned.

Authorized Trek retailers have been notified of the issue, and replacement lights are currently shipping to shops in the US, Canada, UK, and Japan. Owners of the affected models can expect fast service and replacement parts.


Bontrager encourages daytime running lights for bikes

They’ve been on motorcycles forever, and more recently cars have adopted them too, so why not bikes?

Daytime running lights can significantly improve your visibility on the road, Bontrager says, and the brand is touting its new line of front and rear bike lights as specifically designed for both day and night use. Bontrager says it is just the first step in a sweeping line of products to make cycling safer. Since safety concerns are the number one impediment to get new cyclists out on a bike, we think it’s a great move.


Bontrager says the data it has collected show accidents decreased 25 percent after automobiles adopted daytime running lights, and cycling accidents could be reduced by a third. Because 80 percent of bicycle accidents occur during daylight hours, the brand feels there is a big opportunity for positive change. Just a few days ago I was driving on a twisty mountain road and the cyclists on the road were extremely hard to see as we went from bight sunlight into dark shadows and back again through the trees. A bright light really would have helped.


Optimizing visibility is more than just raw lumens, Bontrager says. The key difference is being seen versus being noticed. It says its line of taillights have blink patterns that are specially designed to be more conspicuous during the day than just a steady blink. It says some are visible from up to two kilometers away.

The lineup


Flare RT tail light

  • 65 lumens and 270 degree visibility.
  • Wirelessly controlled on/off, mode selection and more.
  • Visible from 2 kilometers
  • Two daylight modes, two night modes and turn signal compatible.
  • $80


Flare R tail light

  • 65 lumens and 270 degree visibility.
  • Visible from 2 kilometers
  • Two daylight modes, two night modes.
  • $60


Flare R City

  • 35 lumens
  • Visible from 400 meters.
  • Two daylight modes, two night modes.
  • $40


Ion 800 RT

  • Wirelessly controlled on/off, mode selection and more.
  • 800 lumens and 270 degrees of visibility.
  • High, Medium, Low, Day Flash and Night Flash modes.
  • $120


Ion 800 R

  • 800 lumens and 270 degrees of visibility.
  • High, Medium, Low, Day Flash and Night Flash modes.
  • $100


Ion 350 RT

  • Wirelessly controlled on/off, mode selection and more.
  • 350 lumens.
  • High, Medium, Low, Day Flash and Night Flash modes. 
  • $80


Ion 350 R

  • 350 lumens.
  • High, Medium, Low, Day Flash and Night Flash modes.
  • $60


Ion 100 R

  • 100 lumens.
  • High, Medium, Low, Day Flash and Night Flash modes.
  • $40

bontrager-daytime-running-lights-11 bontrager-daytime-running-lights-10

Ion 100 R / Flare R City set

  • Both models sold as a package deal.
  • $70



Review: Lupine Rotlicht taillight

Let’s get the initial reaction out of the way:

Holy Toledo, $125 is a lotta cash for a taillight!!! OMG, LOL, SMH, etc.


OK, now shake off the bad attitude and read on. Or don’t. I know I was curious what a $125 taillight offers.

The most interesting feature of this light is an accelerometer activated “brake light”. The light senses rapid deceleration and ups the brightness, much like the brake lights on your car or your 1983 RZ350. I’m pretty curious what drivers thought about the brake light feature, if anything at all. I didn’t notice a difference in drivers’ behavior, but without a real scientific study, it would be pretty hard to make a definitive statement about this. I can say with some authority that I don’t think the brake light makes me any less safe, and my gut feeling it that it is a great feature and one we’ll see on more taillights in the future. I rarely ride in groups, but can image this feature being a nice safety feature for those dudes (it is always dudes) who hop, uninvited, into your draft for a free pull down the bike path.

The Rotlight also has an ambient light sensor. As the night gets darker, the light drops its brightness down a few notches, but cranks it back up when it senses brighter lights, such as headlights. Pretty slick, and a good way to conserve battery life on long rides while keeping the safety factor high.


There are four modes to chose from: steady, flash, pulse, and steady-pulse. Steady and flash are self explanatory. Pulse is a less abrupt flash mode and steady-pulse adds the pulse (not flash) mode to a steady beam of light. I’ve quickly become a fan of the steady-pulse mode. It seems to be a great middle ground between the calmer steady mode and the attention-getting (and blood pressure-raising) flash modes of most lights.

And finally, the light can be adjusted to one of four brightness settings in each mode. At the brightest 2 watt mode you get 160 lumens of red light, the lowest 0.1 watts  is 10 lumens. Run times are below. Changing all these setting with a single button interface isn’t the most intuitive thing. Day-to-day operation is fine, but digging deeper to adjust brightness or turn the light sensor or brake light features on and off requires the owners manual nearby. I just kept the pdf saved in my phone for reference.

Mode       Steady        Blink      Pulse      Wave+Pulse

0.1W          30h          60h          —                  25h
0.25W        12h          24h          24h               10h
0.5W          6h            12h          12h                 5h
1W              3h              6h           6h               2:30h
2W             1:30h         3h           3h                  —

The light includes rubber straps in two lengths for any tube between 22 and 55 mm. The back of the light is angled to keep it straight on most common seat tube angles, but it isn’t adjustable for alternate mounting locations like seat stays. Lupine sent along a seat rail mount for the light as well, a $20 option. There are also options for blue or red light bodies, or a red lens instead of the stock clear.

I’ve been lucky enough to review quite a few Lupine products and each time I’ve come away impressed. For riders that are shopping for sturdy but feature-laden lights, Lupine is perhaps the best place to start looking. If price is the number one shopping concern, obviously there are plenty of less expensive options out there. Once set up as I wanted, the Rotlicht was no harder to operate than anything else on the market, but offers a level of customization second to none.

Lupine continues to release class-leading lights to the market, and the Rotlicht is no different. If you love riding with the latest technology, the Rotlicht is your huckleberry.

For U.S. buyers, leads the way. The rest of the world can check out



Review: CatEye Rapid lights

There are a lot of “safety” (as in, be-seen) cycling lights out there and, to be honest, they aren’t all that different. Pick one with a style, price and lumen output that suits your needs and run it until it runs out. When CatEye’s series of Rapid lights showed up, I shrugged, put them on one of my bikes and went about my errand running and rambling.

cateye pair

Rapid X3 (top), Rapid X2 (bottom)

Turns out, I quite like them. These Rapids are aesthetically pleasing and could not be easier to operate. The large, raised power button on the side of each light makes them simple to turn on and off without needing to look down or employ finger gymnastics. The streamlined, non-bulky shape means the Rapids don’t stick out obtrusively and sit tidily in line with seatposts, seatstays, fork legs and handlebars alike. Since I run many of my seatposts low enough that a saddlebag will take up most of the available space, I appreciate the ability to mount the Rapid on a bike’s seatstay.

The light emitted isn’t limited to a single, straight-ahead beam. The light beams fan out nearly 90 degrees on each side, improving your headlight visibility and making it more likely that others will see your rear light, even if they aren’t directly behind you.

cateye lights-4

Rapid X2

The mounting system is as simple as it gets. I applaud the current trend toward lights that are quick to take off and put on without tools, allowing you to swap lights between/among bikes with ease. Each light comes with two sizes of rubber bands for varying post sizes (including aero posts, if that’s your thing) and a clip for using on a backpack or saddle bag. Also available is the “Spacer X,” which allows you to mount the light to other random things, such as rack brackets or specialized saddle clips.

cateye lights-6

Rapid X2

Those rubber bands are easy to lose, especially when you’re regularly undoing the light to charge it. Slide the band over the light or onto the bike’s handlebar as soon as you remove it so that it doesn’t wander off. Also unknown is how long the rubber bands will last with all the stretching. That said, an old-fashioned rubber band from your cubicle desk drawer, or a hair tie, would surely work in a pinch.

cateye lights-8

Rapid X2

The CatEye Rapid light family features three models, each available in red rear and white front lights. They are powered by LEDs and offer several combinations of flashing modes, low battery auto-save functions and side visibility. The lights are charged by micro USB cables (included).

cateye lights-7

Rapid X2

The insanely bright Rapid X3—brighter than even the 65-lumen Bontrager Flare R we tested and liked a few months ago—utilizes two strips of LED lights, which are operated separately by the two side buttons. In all, you can get 48 combinations of light modes out of the X3 and feel more confident about being seen during daylight hours, as well as at night.

Rapid X
Max output: 25 lumens front/rear
Charge time: 2 hours
Run time: 1 hour on high mode to 30 hours on flashing mode
Weight (each): 22 grams
Price (each): $30

Rapid X2
Max output: 100 lumens front/50 rear
Charge time: 2 hours
Run time: 1 hour on high mode to 30 hours on flashing mode
Weight (each): 30.5 grams
Price (each): $50

Rapid X3
Max output: 200 lumens front/100 rear
Charge time: 3 hours
Run time: 1 hour in high mode to 30 hours on flashing mode
Weight (each): 46 grams
Price (each): $60

See all of the lights here: CatEye Safety Lights




Review: Orp headlight / bell / smile machine

What the heck is Orp? Well, it was born in an industrial design studio, was incubated through a crowdfunding session, and now represents a really fun and useful way to stay safe on your bike. The idea started as a horn, a 96-decibel electronic noisemaker, to be exact, that emits a rather obnoxious sound to alert drivers, pedestrians and wandering animals to your presence. It can also emit a friendly bell sound if you’re feeling pleasant. Press up on the Orp’s tail for the happy sound, down for the angry sound. Both sounds also flash the built-in light.


The LED light is more than bright enough to make yourself visible and can be turned on and off independently of the bell sounds. It can operate in steady or blinking mode, emitting 70 lumens on steady and 83 lumens when flashing. The Orp’s plastic body is water resistant, and generally “accident proof” to make you “splatterproof,” and comes in eight fun colors. The whole unit straps to your 31.8 mm handlebars with its built-in stretchy rubber mount, and the packaging includes a rubber shim to fit smaller-diameter handlebars.


The Orp isn’t always on. Because it relies on battery power, you do have to remember to turn it on and off. Because the light and horn operate independently, I found that if the light is off the battery has enough juice to last a week or more if you forget and leave it on. There is no indicator light to tell if it is on, but a quick press of the tail will let you know. It also has a cute power-up or power-down sound. With the light on, Orp claims three hours of run time with the light in steady mode and 11 hours in flash mode.


The best way to make the Orp super practical is to pair it with the “Remorp,” a wired remote that places the controls at your fingertips, either on flat bars or drop bars. It plugs into that black port you see above.

I only had to charge the Orp every couple weeks with the included Micro-USB cord and found it super fun to use, finding excuses to ring the distinctive happy bell sound all over town. If it’s not cute enough for you right out of the box, you can add Orp’s mustache stickers to personalize yours. Stop taking cycling so seriously.

The Orp sells for $65, plus $15 for the remote.
More info:



Field Tested: Satechi RideMate headlight

I thought I knew the bike industry pretty well, but I had never heard of Satechi when I got wind of this new light. Turns out it’s more of a general interest consumer electronics brand that makes gadgets like USB hubs, rechargeable batteries and Bluetooth speakers.


The RideMate light uses a single LED pumping out a claimed 500 lumens. I can’t offer any sort of independent verification of that number, but I’d say it’s in the ballpark. It’s certainly bright enough that it will light your way just fine at speed in the dark and I feel more than comfortable operating it in the lowest of its three settings as a “be-seen” light around town. It also has a flashing mode for daytime use. (For daytime only, people!)

It operates a bit differently than other lights in that it has an on/off button that controls the whole thing, including charging out, and then a separate button that controls the light.

The RideMate is a bit bulky compared to the sleek competition, but the aluminum body is sturdy and looks good. The diffuser in front also wraps around the side body offering a bit of light to enhance your peripheral vision and make you more visible from the side.


The killer feature of the RideMate is that it not only charges with a micro USB, it offers a USB out port so you can charge your phone or other items from its 2,500 mAh battery. Yes it will drain the runtime from your light but if you get caught with a dead battery in your phone it can certainly come in handy.

The included mount is a fixed type that bolts to your handlebars and has a quick release for the light unit. It can swivel a few degrees each way if you have swept back bars. I would like to see a second, rubber strap for easier swapping from bike to bike, but at the price it’s hard to ask for more.


In all I’ve been quite impressed with the RideMate and its features for the price.

Vital stats

  • Price: $50 ($35 on
  • Weight: 149 grams
  • Output: 500 lumens
  • Claimed runtimes: High – 2 hours, Medium – 4 hours, Low – 8 hours.

Field Tested: Light & Motion Urban 800

Light & Motion knows a thing or three about building sturdy bike lights—after all the company got its start building dive lights and still manufactures all its products in Monterey, California.

The Urban 800 is a wonderfully versatile little light—and I do mean little. One inch in diameter and four inches long, it’s about the size of a fat lipstick tube. It also weighs just 122 grams, so it disappears when mounted on your helmet with the included helmet mount. Charging is handled through an included micro USB cable.


The 800 lumens are more than enough to show you the way, and when dimmed to low (175 lumens) it will run for six hours. The single CREE LED shines through a round reflector for a fairly standard beam pattern, but it is more than bright enough to spot potholes in the dark. You don’t have to worry about riding it in the rain either, as it is rated to be submerged in one meter of water for up to 30 minutes (though from the demonstrations I’ve seen, it will last even longer.)

On the sides are two amber lights that help increase visibility from the side, but they can also be turned off if you don’t want to use them. The stretchy rubber mount stayed put on a variety of handlebars, and the unit can swivel freely 360 degrees. New for this year is a removable mount that uses the GoPro interface for a clean mount on various other accessories. It can also be used as a flashlight with the included finger mount and lanyard.


Add up all these features and the Urban 800 is my new favorite bike light. It is just one in a whole lineup of Urban models from Light & Motion starting with the $60 Urban 350. Pick which one is right for you and you won’t be sorry.

Vital stats

  • Price: $129
  • Weight: 122 grams
  • Output: 800 lumens
  • Claimed runtimes: High – 1.5 hours, Medium – 3 hours, Low – 6 hours, Flash – 120 hours.

Field Tested: Paul Components Gino light mount


You’ve either taken up most of your handlebar real estate with a GPS, smartphone, or bell, or you’re the type who prefers an uncluttered cockpit. But, you ride plenty when the sun goes down or hasn’t risen yet, and understand the need for proper lighting. If your favorite bike has M5 threaded fork dropout eyelets, mid-fork braze-ons, and/or seatstay rack mounts or rear dropout eyelets, the Paul Components Gino Light Mount is just the ticket.

Made in Chico, California of anodized 6061 aluminum, the 30-gram, 26mm-diameter light mount installs quickly and easily with a threaded bolt, providing a nice attachment point to your battery-operated headlight. Like a car, you benefit from a beam cast at a shallower angle, revealing the true nature of what lies ahead as you pedal to your next destination. You can also attach another one of these $24 gems—which come in silver or black—on the rear of your bike to use your red battery-powered lights.


You may have to replace your provided bolt for a longer one if you’re adding the Gino to an eyelet already occupied by a fender or rack stay, like I did on my wife’s daily commuter bike. She noticed the improved low lighting immediately. Some baskets (like the Portland Design Works’ TakeOut) have braze-ons for the Gino, something to consider if your fork or frame lacks proper fittings.

Editor’s note: This review originally appeared in Issue #34 of Bicycle Times. To make sure you never miss a bike review, order a subscription and you’ll be ready for the everyday cycling adventure.



Bontrager releases new taillight designed for daytime use


Cyclists all know that bight lights and visible clothing can make them more visible to drivers and thus safer against collisions, and Bontrager’s newest tail light is designed to cut through the distractions of daylight driving and make it even more difficult for drivers to miss seeing cyclists ahead. According to studies, 40 percent of cyclists’ collisions with cars are from being struck from behind, and having a tail light on during the day makes perfect sense.


The new Flare R light is a USB-rechargeable, 36 gram LED light that pumps out 65 lumens—that’s more than a car’s tail light. Bontrager studied flash patterns and intensity to choose exactly the one that will make it most visible to drivers in the clutter of urban lighting. Bontrager says it is visible in daylight from more than a mile away.


The Flare R has four distinct flash patters: two for daylight and two for night:

  • Day Flash mode will utilize all 65 Lumens in a strategically placed random flash pattern designed to draw a motorist’s eyes. Fully charged run time is 5.75 hours.
  • Day Steady mode uses 25 Lumens of steady illumination and is great for group rides. Fully charged run time is 4.25 hours.
  • Night Flash mode uses an irregular flash pattern punctuated by short pops of increased intensity. Fully charged run time is 23 hours.
  • Night Steady mode provides 5 Lumens of steady light great for consistent nighttime visibility. Fully charged run time is 21 hours.


One of the downsides to battery powered lights is that when the battery dies, you’re out of luck. The Flare R has a built-in safety system, whereby when 75 percent of the charge is used the LED indicator light on the unit turns from green to red. When it reaches 5 percent of its charge it automatically puts itself into a safety mode and dials back the intensity to give an extra hour or two of run time, just enough to get to safety. A full recharge takes only 2.5 hours.

The new Flare R light is available now in Trek and Bontrager retail stores for $60.



Review: Lezyne Macro Drive Duo and Zecto Drive Auto

Lezyne released a host of new lights this year from the 1,400-Lumen Mega Drive headlight to the 7-lumen KTV taillight. Sitting in the middle of that lineup are the 400 lumen Macro Drive Duo and 20 Lumen Zecto Drive Auto.

Macro Drive Duo – $85

Lezyne Macro Drive Duo and Zecto Drive Lights V2—WEB (1 of 3)

The Macro Drive Duo’s helmet mount makes it one of just a few lights that offer both headlight and taillight functionality in one package. This video does a better job of showing the Duo’s many the features and specs than I could in couple thousand words:

While many of us around the office were a bit skeptical of this idea at first, the Macro Drive Duo has grown on me during the test period. Though I’m not a huge fan of helmet mount lights in general, it was quite convenient to mount on my helmet and know I had a decent amount of light spilling out front and rear.

The single rear LED is far brighter than its diminutive size suggests, and it broadcasts a wide swatch of light regardless of the angle of the light on your helmet. That said, in terms of being seen from the rear, I wouldn’t be comfortable without additional rear lighting. Best to think about this as supplementary.

Lezyne Macro Drive Duo and Zecto Drive Lights V2—WEB (2 of 3)

Out front, the 400-lumen “Blast” mode offers more than ample light to be seen in the city, but just a touch less than I’d like for true night riding on dark country roads. Some of that perception might be due to the light’s concentrated center beam, which provides decent illumination in the center of the beam, but not as much ambient spill as I would like in the foreground. Of course, it’s easy to be spoiled by light output these days due to the industry’s equivalent of a lumens arms race.

From my experience, most riders have a preference for handlebar or helmet mounted lights. If you’re in the helmet-mounted camp and find 400 lumens sufficient for your needs, the Macro Drive Duo is certainly worth considering as the $85 asking price is quite reasonable. And, if you like to swap between helmet and handlebar mounting, Lezyne offers an accessory handlebar mount for $4. Just turn off the rear LED and clip it to on. If you’d solidly in the handlebar-mount crowd, Lezyne offers the Macro Drive for $70, which is essentially the same light without the rear LED.


Zecto Drive Auto – $50

Lezyne Macro Drive Duo and Zecto Drive Lights V2—WEB (3 of 3)

Lezyne’s Zecto Drive Auto rechargeable rear light incorporates motion sensing technology to turn itself on and off automatically after being stationary for three minutes. Check out this video for all the specifics.

From the get-go I’ve been very impressed with Zecto Drive Auto. It’s small, light, well constructed and puts out a lot of light. The LED battery level indicators on the side of the light are a very nice touch for knowing when you need to recharge. Event the shortest burn time of 2:45 is ample for most applications. I also liked the broad range of output offerings from the 5-lumen “Economy” mode, which is great for group rides where you don’t want to blind your buddies, to the 20-lumen “Daytime” mode that’s great for being seen on foggy or dreary days.

Also awesome is the super quick, simple and reliable strap or clip style mounting system. There’s a fringe benefit for the mountain bikers in the crowd too. This light works great on long-travel suspension bikes due to it’s small size. Since it protrudes out very little from the seatpost, you don’t have to worry about the rear tire smashing into your taillight on full compression.

Due mostly to force of habit, I didn’t often take advantage of the light’s automatic on/off feature as I’m pretty good about remembering to turn off my lights. Though it is nice to know you light will conserve energy if you leave it on and turn itself back on should you forget.

Overall, the Zecto Drive Auto is a slick little light that’s well worth the asking price.



Bike2Power releases hub-mounted dynamo USB charger


If this thing works as advertised it could get a lot of people pretty charged up. (Sorry, that was some dynamo humor.)

Anyway, Bike2Power has released a hub-mounted dynamo that can be used on nearly any existing bike, has a built-in light, and can charge USB devices. Unlike some similar devices that require a dedicated dynamo hub, the BikeCharge Dynamo can be installed on almost any front or rear wheel and the lights can be set to high, low or blinking modes.


By cacheing the power in a 1,100 mAh battery pack, it can charge devices like smartphones, which are notoriously picky about power draw. The battery means it will continue to power your device even when the bike is stopped, such as at a red light, without interruption.

I predict these types of devices are going to be big in the next few years as more touring and city cyclists want to bring their gadgets with them. I’m also intrigued because it will fit on fat bikes with extra-wide front hubs


At $119 it’s a lot less expensive than a dynamo wheel, and can be switched from bike to bike. The best part is that if it doesn’t fit your bike, they will even take it back for a full refund within 30 days.

We’re going to try and get our hands on one to review, so stay tuned.


An earlier version of this story stated that there are no dynamo hubs available to fit fat bikes. However, the Son 28 135 is in fact available to fit fat bike forks with “rear” rotor spacing.


Light & Motion Urban 2.0 line features waterproof commuting visibility


Earlier this year Light & Motion relaunched its all-new Urban 2.0 line, which features simple, one-piece LED lights that cover a broad spectrum from commuting to performance. They are available in four lumen levels and a rainbow of colors starting at $70.

Made entirely in Light & Motion’s California factory, the Urban 2.0 line won’t leave you hanging when the days get soggy either, as the company draws on its diving light expertise to make them 100 percent waterproof. As technology continues to improve LEDs and batteries, the run times are getting longer, the lights are getting brighter and the cost keeps coming down. The 800-lumen model is also available in a fast-charge version that can be full refreshed in just two and a half hours. Run times are 1.5 hours, 3 hours or 6 hours on high, medium and low, respectively.

The “urban” portion of the name comes from their details like a quick-release, tool-free handlebar and helmet mounts and amber side lights to keep you visible at intersections, where most bike/car collisions occur. Light & Motion has also done away with the rapid blinking mode that can actually distract drivers (as well as drive everyone crazy) and replaced it with a slower pulsing mode similar to what’s used on many motorcycles.

The five models in the Urban 2.0 line include:

  • Urban 350 – $69.99 Colors: Obsidian Stout/Blue Moon
    Urban 500 – $99.99 Colors: Blue Ribbon/Hopsickle
    Urban 650 – $129.99 Colors: Silver Moon/Shock Top
    Urban 800: $149.99 Colors: Anchor Steam/Steamroller
    Urban 800FC – $179.99 Color: Steelhead

Review: Cateye Volt 700 Headlight


Cateye’s Volt 700 is a slick little light that offers a ton of versatility and packs a pretty good punch for its size. When you need to see, it pumps out 700 lumens with a two-hour run time. When you need to be seen, HyperConstant mode maintains enough light to illuminate your path, while also rapidly flashing 800 lumens to grab driver’s attention for seven hours of run time. In between are a 300 lumen setting with three and a half hours of burn time and 100 lumen “All-Night” mode that burns for 10 hours. If you need even more run time for nocturnal adventures, you can buy a second battery for $45.

With the broad variation in handlebar clamp diameters, Cateye’s FlexTight mounting bracket makes a ton of sense. Officially, it accommodates 22mm to 32mm handlebars with no additional shims, but I found it also works great for 35mm bars. The only downside is the possibility of losing the nut that snugs up the whole system as it’s not captured.

For $130, this light is hard to beat. It’s small, powerful enough for on road and mixed surface use, and very convenient to use.


This Just In: Bontrager Ion 700 headlight


Daylight hours are shrinking, but for many cyclists that doesn’t mean our miles have to follow suit. Finding a decent and affordable rechargeable headlight is getting easier, and the five-mode $99 Bontrager Ion 700 is one to consider.

The high-power Cree LED kicks out a full 700 Lumens, which Bontrager says will run bright for up to an hour and 45 minutes.

What’s Cree? It’s the company that first brought the blue LED to market in 1989, and today Cree’s XLamp LEDs exceed industry standards for brightness and efficiency. According to the company, Cree XLamp LEDs were the first ‘lighting-class’ LEDs – LEDS bright enough to be used in general-illumination applications, such as desk lamps, ceiling fixtures and street lights.

In addition, Cree’s extensive line of high-brightness LEDs are also introducing new performance levels to outdoor video displays and decorative lighting. Seems like Bontrager did some proper vetting when deciding on LED technology.


Five modes

If you don’t want oncoming traffic to flash their high beams, bump it down to 450 Lumens for three hours of runtime, or 200 Lumens for six hours, 45 minutes. There’s also a 50 Lumen flash mode and an ‘irregular strobe’ that comes in handy for daytime use. Dual amber ‘windows’ bookend the face of the headlight, which is primarily made of metal, not plastic. A full micro USB recharge takes up to five hours.


A clever rubber bracket provides 20 degrees of adjustability, and fits handlebars from 22.2 to 31.8mm in diameter.

Check out this short YouTube video to get a feel for what the Ion 700 can do in real-world conditions:

Visit for more information on this and other commuting products from the mad scientists in Waterloo, Wisconsin.



This Just In: Blackburn Central rechargeable USB lights


A good set of lights is one of the simplest ways to promote your safety on the road. Being seen—and seeing where you’re going—is pretty much the most essential functions of urban cycling. Blackburn Designs continues to expand its lighting options with a new set of USB rechargeable “blinky” lights that pack a lot of technology into a small package.

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